Planning for Italy is FUN! I think I am currently driving my boyfriend and friends crazy with constant chatter about hotels, rental cars, train tickets, and the like. I haven't been to Italy since the summer of 2004 so this is a pretty big deal!
Since I got my ticket (late January) I have gone back and forth about how to structure the trip. I'll have fifteen nights there, and currently (but changing every day!) the plan looks like this:
- Three nights in Lecce, Puglia, staying at the Casa dei Mercanti. Lecce is supposed to be beautiful and I look forward to exploring this Baroque city.
- Two nights in Rome, with the arrival of the wonderful J.! Possible hotels: The Inn at the Roman Forum, or Residenza Canali. Or somewhere else! Definitely one of the indecisions.
- Four nights in Bologna. I was going to stay at the Orologio, one of the Bologna Art Hotes, but now I switched to the Commercianti (also an Art Hotel). The Orologio is cheaper on the weekend but the fourth night, a weekday, was twice the price, so it made sense to go with the slightly more expensive Commercianti. Still, 99 euro a night for a double at a four star hotel seems good! (I just checked again now and the average nightly rate now is 14!)
- This were the serious indecision comes in! We have six nights and the idea is to meander through the north of Italy, mainly the Alto Adige, and end up in Salzburg, visiting J.'s friend. I can't decide whether to spend the majority of the nights in one place, or a new place every night, or how long to stay in Salzburg... We are also considering visiting J.'s friends outside of Munich. So I'll have to get back to you on this one!
We will use trains to go to Lecce and then Bologna, but probably rent a car for the last portion, although trains are a possibility as well. Some of the places I am considering between Bologna and Salzburg are Trento, Bolzano, Bressanone, Castelrotto, and villages inbetween. I don't really want to stay in too many places, but we'll figure this out when we know when is the best time to visit friends. We could skip the two nights in Rome, but Rome is always tempting - and how fun to share it with someone special!
Planning has been FUN so far and it is amazing how many reviews and opinions are out there. Just reading and planning and dreaming is such a treat! I can't believe that in just a month and a half I'll be sitting on a train in Italy, listening to my favorite language...